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US to fund tracking devices for autistic children

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NEW YORK (AP) - The U.S. Department of Justice says it will fund voluntary tracking devices for children with autism or other conditions that put them at risk for fleeing their caregivers.

Sen. Charles Schumer announced the agreement Wednesday. It comes after the remains of New York City autistic teenager Avonte Oquendo were found in the East River.

Schumer called Sunday for legislation to provide GPS tracking devices for autistic children and others with a tendency to bolt from parents or caregivers.

The senator now says the Department of Justice has agreed to allow existing grant funds to be used for the voluntary devices.

The Department of Justice confirmed the agreement.

Avonte's disappearance from his Queens school on Oct. 4 triggered a massive search.

Schumer's legislation was to have been called Avonte's Law.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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